With over 330 million monthly active users, Twitter is one of the largest Social Media platforms in the world. It allows users to send and read microblogs (tweets) of up to 280 characters. People can use Twitter to express themselves through Tweets, keep up with trends, and participate in global discussions. Integrating Twitter and Webhook can significantly help users to get real-time events with ease. This can be accomplished via Twitter’s Account Activity API (Application Programming Interface).
Webhook-based Account Activity API allows users to subscribe to real-time events associated with a user account. This Webhook-based API enables direct messages, which give the complete set of account-related activity such as Tweets, Mentions, Replies, Retweets, Quote Tweets, and many more.
This article will guide you through the process of setting up Twitter Webhooks Integration using 4 simple steps. It will provide you with a brief overview of Twitter and Webhook-based Account Activity API with their key features. You will also explore the key benefits of setting up Twitter Webhooks Integration in further sections. Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
- An active Developer account is required to access the Twitter APIs.
- Working Knowledge of Webhooks.
- Working Knowledge of HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) Requests.
Introduction to Twitter
Twitter is a microblogging Social Media Platform based in the United States. It was founded by Jack Dorsey in 2006 with the goal of connecting people and ideas. You can use Twitter to communicate your thoughts via Tweets, stay up with trends, and join the global discussion. Moreover, you can also access other media content on Twitter by simply clicking on tweets that contain links to videos and images from other websites.
In addition to personal use, it is equally valuable for businesses and marketers to enhance Brand Awareness and Customer Engagement. It is also used for direct communication between social groups and organizations, particularly with the use of hashtags, which allow a tweet to be seen by all users who follow a topic that begins with the hash (#) sign.
Today, Twitter is one of the popular social networking services, with 206 million daily active members and 500 million tweets. Without a doubt, it is the largest social network and community on the internet.
Key Features of Twitter
Twitter is one of the popular social networking platforms. It provides numerous features. Some of the key features of Twitter include:
- Twitter Lists: Twitter Lists can be considered an effective marketing tool. This feature allows users to follow a personalized list of authors rather than individual content creators.
- Customized Tweet Alerts: You may set up your Twitter account to send you SMS (Short Message Service) notifications whenever a new tweet is posted. This helps you to track tweets from specific persons or companies.
- Twitter Moments: Twitter Moments allow users to curate different stories across the world onto their timelines to get up-to-date information.
- Auto-Complete: Auto-Complete is a feature in which a list of suggestions appears as the user types. Auto-Complete can help speed up the process of sending a tweet using the @username format.
To know more about Twitter, visit this link.
Introduction to Webhooks
Webhooks are the automated messages delivered from apps to your devices when something within the app interface is triggered. They have a message, or payload, and are delivered to a unique URL (Uniform Resource Locator), which is essentially the app’s phone number or address. Webhooks are always faster and take less effort on your part than Polling. They’re very similar to SMS notifications.
Webhooks uses HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) requests to send data from one endpoint to another. When a condition for a specific event is met, it sends a message to one endpoint and binds it to the URL. The message is then transmitted to the other endpoints using the GET and POST methods. Later in this article, you will learn about Webhook-based Account Activity API that is extensively used in Twitter.
To know more about Webhooks, visit this link.
Introduction to Account Activity API
The Account Activity API is a Webhook-Based API that allows you to send events related to a Twitter user’s account activities in real-time. For example, when a subscriber creates or deletes a Tweet, receives or sends a Direct Message, follows a new user, or likes a post, the Account Activity API sends a JSON event payload.
The Account Activity API differs from Twitter’s REST (Representational State Transfer) and streaming APIs as it uses a combination of REST endpoints and Webhooks for data delivery. It is done in real-time via an HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) request when a specified event occurs on Twitter. Moreover, it also improves the efficiency of a user’s interaction with your app by delivering data as early as possible.
The Account Activity API comes in three versions: Premium Sandbox, Premium Paid, and Enterprise. So, you can easily scale up when you need more accounts for additional functionality.
To know more about Account Activity API, visit this link.
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Steps to Set Up Twitter Webhooks Integration
Now that you have a basic grasp of Twitter and Account Activity API, let’s try to understand the procedure to set up Twitter Webhooks Integration. The steps to set up Twitter Webhooks Integration are as follows:
Step 1: Create a Twitter App
The first step in setting up Twitter Webhooks API is to create a Twitter app. You can follow the below-mentioned procedure to create a Twitter app:
- Go to apps.twitter.com and sign in with your Twitter account. Then, create a Twitter App by clicking on the Create New App as shown below.
Note: If you’re creating the app for your company, using a corporate Twitter account is recommended.
- On the permissions tab of your app page, enable the Read, Write, and Access direct messages.
- Take note of your app’s Consumer Key (API Key) and Consumer Secret (API Secret) under the Keys and Access Tokens tab as shown below.
- Generate your app’s Access Token and Access Token Secret on the same tab as shown below.
These Access Tokens will be required to register your Webhook URL (Uniform Resource Locator), where you will receive the Twitter account events.
- Take note of your App ID, which can be found on the developer portal’s Apps tab as shown below.
This App ID will be required when you apply for Account Activity API access.
Step 2: Obtain the Account Activity API Access
After the first step is completed, you can follow the below-mentioned procedure to obtain the Account Activity API access:
- Log in to your Twitter account and go to the Dev environments page as shown below.
- Navigate to Set up dev environment and then give your environment a name, and also specify your Twitter App ID.
Step 3: Develop Webhook Consumer App
After you have received the Account Activity API access, you can follow the below-mentioned steps to develop, deploy and host the web app:
- Create a web app with a URL. This URL can be used as a Webhook to receive events.
- Register your webhook URL as shown below. After registering the URL, a POST request to the /webhooks.json?url= endpoint will be made.
Note: Make sure that your web app can handle POST requests for incoming events.
- Now, all the account Webhook events will be sent to the URL you specified. You need to make sure that your web app can handle the POST requests for incoming events.
- After the web app is ready, the next step is to add accounts for which you want to receive events.
Step 4: Validate the Twitter Webhooks Integration
After you have successfully set up your Twitter Webhooks Integration, now you can validate the Twitter Webhooks Integration by following the below-mentioned procedures:
- Mark a tweet from one of the Twitter accounts to which your app is subscribed as Favorite to validate the Twitter Webhooks Integration. For each Favorite your subscribers get, you should get a favorite_events via a POST request to your Webhook URL.
- Note that after you’ve added a subscription, it might take up to 10 seconds for the event notification to be sent.
With this, you have successfully set up your Twitter Webhooks Integration. It’s as simple as that.
Key Benefits of Setting Up Twitter Webhooks Integration
Twitter Webhooks Integration has numerous benefits. Some of the key benefits of setting up Twitter Webhooks Integration include:
- Twitter Webhooks Integration uses fewer resources than a streaming API in terms of computational resources. This improves the performance of the integration significantly.
- Twitter Webhooks Integration provides real-time updates with great performance. It eliminates the need for making polling requests to an API periodically to see whether new data is available.
- Twitter Webhooks Integration provides a built-in retry method to re-POST if an activity is not successfully delivered. This minimizes the chances of missed data.
- Twitter Webhooks Integration is a great option for automated messaging that can be tailored to your specific requirements. You can also change the name and avatar of the Webhooks. As a result, the user has more control and customization options.
In this article, you learned how to set up Twitter Webhooks Integration. It also gave an overview of Twitter and Account Activity API along with their key features. You also learned about the key benefits of implementing this integration. You may now build your Twitter API Webhook Integration to gain access to notifications in your Twitter platform with ease.
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